Snapchat is a social media platform that has existed for years alongside Facebook and Instagram as three of the most popular social media apps being used by young people today.
Snapchat allows people to send their friends fun videos and pictures that are viewed and then disappear from both the sender and receivers phone. However, not everyone is aware of the new feature being offered by Snapchat, the Snap Map.
The Snap Map can be accessed by opening Snapchat and then pinching the screen with 2 fingers while it is in the camera mode.
The Snap Map feature allows people to see a users location on an exceptionally detailed map. You can zoom in on a users location and see a satellite image of their location.
This new feature has sparked debate over privacy and safety concerns since the Snap Map can enable people to not only pin point a users location at any given time, they can also track home addresses, travel routes and school/work addresses.
This feature CAN be turned off; the first time the Snap Map is opened, the user will be prompted to confirm who can view their location – you can either choose to share your location with your snapchat friends list, a custom list where the user can select which of their friends can see their location or ‘ghost mode’.
Ghost mode is the setting that completely hides your location on the Snap Map to all users and the users location will never be updated on the Snap Map.
If these settings have already been confirmed, you can still go back and change this by tapping on the ghost icon in the top left corner of the screen in camera mode and then tapping the gear icon in the top right hand corner of the ‘profile’ screen.
Since Snapchat pulled just about all of their advertisement for this feature however did not scratch the actual feature itself, the concern is that parents/carers/guardians may not be aware of their child using this feature without understanding the potential risks and dangers associated with it.